It certainly was an interesting bye week for the Cincinnati Bengals. It seemed like most of the fanbase was ready to call the season after a disappointing loss to the New York Jets and then getting kicked off of their own field against the Cleveland Browns.
However, the AFC North (and some important contenders for Wild Card spots) had their own letdown games in Week 10. That has left the door open for Cincinnati to still sneak into the playoffs this season.
One of the biggest things going for the Bengals is that they are currently looking at the eighth spot in the AFC, which is right outside of the new Wild Card spot for the seventh placed team in the conference. Looking at that they also still have seven games against teams that are .500 or better. That includes four games against teams that they are currently looking to catch up with as well as three division games.
The AFC North is even still in their grasp. After taking control of first place following their win against the Baltimore Ravens in Week 7, Cincinnati lost two straight falling to the bottom of the division. However, after Week 10. The Ravens are only at 6-3 on the season, and no other AFC North team has more than five wins.
The point of presenting all of this is to show that — even with the Bengals still really being on the outside looking in — they still control their own destiny by focusing on the games in front of them. Every week will almost have to take on a playoff feel as even one loss against any of these upcoming teams could come back to haunt them at the end of the year.
The real question becomes what Bengals team are we going to see in the second half of the season? Are we getting the team that went into the bye searching for answers as to how to stop an opposing offense?
Meanwhile, having constant miscues or miscommunications with their own offense? Or will we see the promising team at the beginning of the season that was able to shut down Lamar Jackson and keep things competitive with Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers?
The answer to that question probably decides your answer to this poll.
Will the Bengals make the playoffs?
Yes - As AFC North Champs
Yes - As a Wild Card team
No - They barely miss the cut
No - This team isn’t going to come close